IIwiki:Secret Police

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The Secret Police (also known as the Office of Tongues and Cheeks, Revertshirts, and Editshirts) is an anti-vandalism and anti-violation para-mileditorial force unit within the community of IIWiki, dedicated to bettering the readability and performance of the IIWiki website by helping assist both new and veteran editors in article conformity, article and template syntax, legibility, article content, and neutrality. Unlike tyrants administrators, members of the Secret Police cannot issue Administrative Citations or warnings, cannot revert edits automatically, and cannot banish editors. Members of the Secret Police, however, are given responsibilities such as patrolling recent changes, locating and correcting orphaned pages, fixing erroneous templates, monitoring new pages for errors or failures to include the appropriate work-in-progress templates, watching for violations of the Standards and Conventions, and otherwise fixing errors which they have the power to correct (as well as reporting more pertinent or egregious errors or violations to an appropriate member of the administrative staff).

The Secret Police is an application-only unit, overseen by The Great Dictator Kyrusia. Any user and/or editor may apply to the Secret Police, though all applicants should understand that, in order to join, one should have a workable knowledge of WikiMedia Mark-up Language, should have an expert knowledge and understanding of the Standards and Conventions, and should have zero outstanding warnings or pending punitive actions or cases. Membership in the Secret Police (as implied) is a great secret of the Glorious Wikimperial Site anonymous, though members may choose to reveal their affiliation with the unit without fear of reprisal or punitive action.

Keeping affiliation with the Secret Police anonymous is not necessary, especially considering the application process is publicly available.

Organization

The Secret Police is overseen directly by the IIWiki administrator Kyrusia. It is divided into five loose branches (departments), each of which target a specific area in regard to the Standards and Conventions, each with their own captains and officers. While members of the Secret Police are advised to nominally place their focus in a single department, a member of one department is not restricted from reporting a violation under the focus of another department, nor are they restricted to correcting errors solely relating to their own departmental focus.

The Secret Police departments are organized as follows:

  • Department of Neutrality (DN): Focusing on identifying and correcting articles that do not conform to a neutral point of view. Possibly the most labor-intensive department, officers are encouraged to be experienced editors willing to devote a lot of time to editing and correction. (NPOV)
  • Department of Counter-Vandalism (DCV): Focusing on identifying and reverting vandalism (manually or by reporting it to an administrator), as well as notifying both the original page creator(s)/editor(s) of the vandalism. Informing the suspected vandal is not required and is not suggested if the vandalism is perceived to be egregiously or exceedingly malicious (or illegal, such as the posting of private/personal information); it is up to the discretion of each officer to determine the relative severity of a given instance of vandalism. An officer may notify the suspected vandal, as such, if the severity of the instance is minor or occurred due to an error or misunderstanding. (Standards One, Two, and Three)
  • Department of Article and Template Compliance (DATC): Focusing on identifying and correcting templates (such as information boxes or navigation boxes) which are non-compliant with the Standards and Conventions and either correcting them, informing the editor(s) of the need to correct them, or reporting the non-compliance to an administrator. Further, the DATC focuses on ensuring that articles do not contain meta-material and are not grossly incomplete without the appropriate "work-in-progress" identifiers. If the notified editor(s) appears to be belligerent or otherwise uncooperative, even after informing the individual(s) of the Standards and Conventions, officers are strongly encourage to inform and administrator and not create a conflict or editing-war. (Standards Four, Five, and Six)
  • Department of Grammar and Syntax (DGS): Focusing on identifying and correcting grammatical and syntax errors in regard to linguistics, demarcating long and unwieldy articles into shorter articles appropriately, and ensuring proper article titles. Officers of the DGS require a great understanding and grasp of the English language - preferably as a native or near-native speaker. (Standards Seven and Eight)
  • Department of Miscellaneous Violations (DMV): Focusing on being as annoying and bureaucratic as possible blanking spam pages and marking them for deletion, ensuring proper categorization, correcting orphaned pages, and otherwise increasing readability and ensuring compliance. (Standards Nine, Ten, Eleven, and Twelve)

Procedural Guidelines

For most violations an officer of the Secret Police may come across, the general procedural guidelines are fairly simple. Even so, for the sake of clarity, they must be stated. Ultimately, however, two things must be kept in mind: avoid unnecessary conflict and if something is in violation of the Standards and Conventions, but increases readability, do not correct it. This, ultimately, is why experienced editors are required: ultimately, most violations will be subjective, and an officer of the Secret Police needs to be able to determine when it is best to correct something and when it is best to leave the violation intact.

In the instance an officer, however, comes across a violation that does need to be corrected, the following steps should be followed:

  1. The officer should ask himself: "Does this instance violate a specific article of the Standards and Conventions?"
  2. If the answer is "yes", then the following need be asked: "Which article(s) does the instance violate?"
  3. Followed by: "Can this/these violation(s) be corrected now, without administrator intervention, or are they egregious/complex and should be reported immediately?"
  4. If they cannot be corrected, report them to the appropriate administrator; if they can be corrected...
  5. Identify which article(s) of the Standards and Conventions is/are being violated;
  6. Correct the violation(s), ensuring that the corrections do not, in turn, create further violations or decrease readability;
  7. Then kindly (and politely) inform the editor(s) of the article in violation that a correction has been made, citing the specific article(s) the instance violated with a direct link back to the Standards and Conventions.
  8. If the editor(s) that has been informed then becomes belligerent, reverts the edit, or otherwise removes the officer's correction, report the individual to the appropriate administrator.

Applications to Join

First and foremost: do not post in the talk page of this article - or any article - requesting to become an administrator. Without fail, this will result in denial from the Secret Police and, in all likelihood, ensure a bumping to the bottom of the "potential future administrators" list as well as being added to a super-secret Wikimperial watch-list as a potential devious editor.

If, however, an editor legitimately wishes to take a more proactive role in the IIWiki community, editors may apply to the Secret Police. There is no application form, no long and drawn-out process; all an applicant need do in order to apply is post a new topic of discussion on the talk page for this article detailing why they would like to join the Secret Police, how much time per week they will likely be able to commit to IIWiki and their duties, which department (from the above list) they would be most interested in joining, and if they intend to present a current officer of the Secret Police as a vouching party. Preferably this topic is at least of a paragraph in length.

In the instance an applicant has a vouching party within the Secret Police, they are encouraged to inform that party before they apply that they would like for them to vouch for their validity and experience. Remember: officers of the Secret Police are not required to vouch for anyone, and an applicant cannot force an officer to do such. Vouching for an applicant is a great responsibility, as it not only puts focus on the applicant, but also on the officer vouching for the applicant. If an editor intends to apply as a joke or some-other reason (which probably qualifies as spam), please do not bring the credibility and reputation of a committed officer under scrutiny simply for the sake of humor.

Once an application has been lodged, it may take up to seven days before an applicant might be informed of the outcome. Keep in mind that there is no real "voting process"; to join the Secret Police, all an editor need accomplish is to prove their credibility and the validity of the request, as this will usually perform all the work necessary to ensure an applicant is successful. Even so, all potential applicants are open to the scrutiny of present officers of the Secret Police, with their opinions playing a considerable role in the decision on whether to deny or accept an applicant.

In conclusion, do not take the "Secret Police" moniker terribly seriously. Officers are not out to get editors; they are not here to "oppress creativity or dissent". It is a facade for the sake of humor, relating to the often fascistic aesthetics of the game to which this community is dedicated. Conspiratorial editors are at work everywhere; remain vigilant and never relent in the struggle! Hail Übereditors!

External Links

  • #IIwSP - Official IRC Channel for the IIwiki Secret Police (Channel is moderated [+m] to stop spam. Voice [+v] is required to chat.)